A totally freak injury has put a halt to the title reign of Ryan Burnett as the WBA bantamweight champion.
The Belfast fighter had to forcefully surrender his WBA bantamweight title after suffering a bout-ending back injury on Saturday evening.
And that was in one of the bouts in the quarter-final of the World Boxing Super Series against Nonito Donaire.
The Irishman was not even able to throw right hands in the fourth and retired upon conclusion of the round.
As a result of his giving up, Donaire now carted home both the WBA and vacant WBC diamond belt.
The four-weight world champion will also now lock horns with WBO champion, Zolani Tete in the semi-final of the event.
After the third round, Burnett told trainer, Adam Booth: “I cannot move it and I cannot throw a shot there.”
On the back of trying a right hand in the fourth round, the previously unbetean 26-year-old dropped to his knees.
And after which the British boxing star then saw out the remainder of the round.
Burnett also needed medical attention before he even made his departure from the boxing ring on a stretcher.
He had, however, bossed the early rounds against a rusty opponent who had not battled at 118lb for seven years.
Sure of his own upper-body movement, Burnett had no concern when Donaire cornered and landed successful shots of his own.
And that was with successive left-right combinations with the veteran Filipino boxer also enjoying the better of a third round.
This was just enough to give a suggestion that the crowd were in for a very close boxing contest.
“Burnett is an amazing fighter” – Donaire
Donaire who was visibly the bigger man at bantamweight walked down his opponent at every opportunity.
But Burnett without a knockout in his last seven victories appeared content to operate on the back foot.
And he also did this while he was actually landing a whole lot of stylish combinations on his opponent.
Unable to answer the bell for the fifth, Burnett had to receive treatment with the aid of oxygen in the ring.
And that was the case even before he finally left the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland on a stretcher.
“As a warrior and as a fighter, Burnett is an amazing fighter.”
Donaire who immediately moved to comfort his opponent after the fight had abruptly come to an end said.
“Early on, he just kept coming at me, a win is a win, though.
“And it was not the way I would like to win but he is an amazing fighter,” he summed up.